95 Carbon Fibre/Aivee SR5 Road Wheelset - Clincher by Knight
The three names behind the nascent Knight Composites are responsible for much of the industry-leading technology in cycling aerodynamics today. Given that pedigree, it's not surprising that Knight's 95 Carbon Fibre/Aivee SR5 Road Wheelset is built with aerospace-grade carbon, compacted with an internal bladder, and subjected to testing that exceeds CEN standards. The new aerodynamic profile certainly surprises, though, as Knight's wind tunnel data suggests the Knight 95 sheds up to dozens of grams of drag force compared to the current industry leaders. Plus, by omitting its usual choice of DT Swiss hubs in favor of Aivee's lighter SR5 hubs, Knight manages to effect a nominal weight loss and a boost in structural integrity. The slight claimed weight loss is obviously appreciated, but the overall increase in strength is the real benefit of opting for Aivee hubs. Knight credits the French manufacturer's peculiar flange design for that increase, though we'd also suggest that Aivee's meticulous construction processes may play a role. The hubs' bodies are machined in France on equipment that also produces aerospace and medical-grade equipment, harnessing the precision demanded by those fields in order to capitalize on the wheels' aerodynamic gains. While that weight loss is impressive, a 95mm rim's real job is to cut drag. According to Knight's numbers, the 95's impressive aerodynamic benefits top out at 15 degrees of yaw while traveling at 30mph with -112g of drag force -- roughly equivalent to a solid disc wheel but without the handling drawbacks. That negative number suggests that these wheels actually help propel the bike forward after you've spun them up. Knight calculates the effect of this addition by subtraction as a claimed savings of 22. 5 seconds over 40km when compared to its most aerodynamically-gifted competitor. Just by changing wheels. These gains have seen Knight's newly released wheels enjoy immediate favor with athletes ranging from 70. 3 winners to...
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